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Wyoming Institute for Disabilities

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Dr. Lowe’s commitment to Early Childhood Vision:  Over a decade of consultation to Wyoming’s vision screening program

By: Brittany Mohler, WIND Information Services Intern

Dr. Sue E. Lowe is a developmental optometrist at Snowy Range Vision Center, in Laramie and is the vision consultant for Wyoming Vision Collaborative. Her expertise is in vision development and eye health, while also emphasizing care on children and adults who have difficulty with athletics, academics, physical/mental special needs, low 

Dr. Sue Lowe vision, and/or brain injury. More than 15 years ago she designed the first preschool vision screenings in Wyoming using national evidence-based guidelines. “It has been a pleasure to know the doctors involved in screenings and doing research in this area throughout our United States. The research in these screenings is on going and will continue to develop as technologies and techniques improve,” she said.

Dr. Lowe believes the Wyoming Vision Collaborative’s most significant accomplishment to date is how successfully it has “united professionals involved in child development across the state and opened a dialogue to discuss and improve the method of identification of specific vision difficulties (amblyopia, strabismus, high refractive error) in preschoolers.” In the future she hopes to continue to develop the program for preschoolers to provide greater awareness, to the public and parents, on how important vision and eye health is for the children of Wyoming and the future of the state’s success.

Dr. Lowe explains why vision health is so important, and why she started in Optometry: “I wanted to work in a healthcare field that emphasized neurological development and learning. Vision is our dominant sense, it is learned and therefore trainable. 90% of our learning comes through the visual system and the majority of visual processing systems are based on this visual model…Vision leads the body. My job is to make sure vision is not interfering with my patient’s academics or athletics. The earlier we can identify vision problems the earlier our treatment can begin, which it might be correction of eye sight or vision enhancement procedures. Without treatment often children will adapt their life around the problem.”

Dr. Amy Aldrich, another optometrist at Snowy Range Vision Center, and a member of the Wyoming Optometric Association’s Pediatric Task Force to advise Wyoming Vision Collaborative, has very similar feelings to Dr. Lowe about our successes and goals for the future. She says, “My goal is for the Wyoming Vision Collaborative to develop a meaningful and lasting preschool vision screening program that will positively impact the vision and eye health of Wyoming’s children.” 

Wyoming Vision Collaborative is thankful to these two doctors and their work to help promote child’s eye health in Wyoming and their dedication making it successful.

 

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